Friday Poetry: Hugo Williams

Happy Friday!

Today is an unusual one for me because I have no teaching! Usually I have some lessons to teach but everyone is on holiday so that means I get an extra day off which is nice. Hopefully this means a little bit more reading.

The chosen poem for this week is by Hugo Williams. I must admit I hate a nettle sting hence why I have chosen this poem. I do like nettle tea though, very calming.


Not so much a sting

as a faint burn


not so much a pain

as the memory of pain


the memory of tears

flowing freely down cheeks


in a sort of joy

that there was nothing


worse in the world

than stinging nettle stings


and nothing better

than cool dock leaves.


Hugo Williams


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Friday Poetry: Gillian Clarke

I love plums! Green Gages are my absolute favourite. Due to this I have chosen a poem about plums by the Welsh poet Gillian Clarke.



When their time comes they fall

without wind, without rain.

They seep through the trees’ muslin

in a slow fermentation.


Daily the low sun warms them

in a late love that is sweeter

than summer. In bed at night

we hear heartbeat of fruitfall.


The secretive slugs crawl home

to the burst honeys, are found

in the morning mouth on mouth,



We spread patchwork counterpanes

for clean catch. Baskets fill, 

never before such harvest,

such a hunters’ moon burning


the hawthorns, drunk on syrups

that are richer by night

when spiders pitch

tents in the wet grass.


This morning the red sun

is opening like a rose

on our white wall, prints there

the fishbone shadow of a fern.


The early blackbirds fly

guilty from a dawn haul

of fallen fruit. We too

breakfast on sweetnesses.


Soon plum trees will be bone,

grown delicate with frost’s

formalities. Their black

angles will tear the snow.


Gillian Clarke


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Friday Poetry: Anon

Happy Bank Holiday Weekend!

I hope everyone has some good reading planned for the long weekend. Now you will have noticed this is a day late but to be honest I forgot, but I thought I would still post the chosen poem anyway. Also it isn’t technically a poem but hopefully you will enjoy it.


This is the House That Jack Built


This is the farmer sowing his corn,

That kept the cock that crowed in the morn,

That waked the priest all shaven and shorn,

That married the man all tattered and torn,

That kissed the maiden all forlorn,

That milked the cow with the crumpled horn,

That tossed the dog,

That worried the cat,

That killed the rat,

That ate the malt

That lay in the house that Jack built.




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Friday Poetry: Lord Byron

Happy Friday!

My chosen poem today is by the notorious Lord Byron who is known for his often outrageous writings and misadventures.


So, We’ll Go No More a-Roving


So, we’ll go no more a-roving

So late into the night,

Though the heart be still as loving,

And the moon be still as bright.


For the sword outwears its sheath,

And the soul wears out the breast,

And the heart must pause to breathe,

And love itself have rest.


Though the night was made for loving,

And the day returns too soon,

Yet we’ll go no more a-roving

By the light of the moon.

Lord Byron


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Friday Poetry: T. S. Eliot

Happy Friday!

I hope everyone has some good weekend plans ahead. This week’s poem is an old favourite. As some of you know I love the cat poems by Eliot so I thought I would share another of my favourites.

The Rum Tug Tugger

The Rum Tum Tugger is a Curious Cat:
If you offer him pheasant he would rather have grouse.
If you put him in a house he would much prefer a flat,
If you put him in a flat then he’d rather have a house.
If you set him on a mouse then he only wants a rat,
If you set him on a rat then he’d rather chase a mouse.
Yes the Rum Tum Tugger is a Curious Cat–
And there isn’t any call for me to shout it:
For he will do
As he do do
And there’s no doing anything about it!


The Rum Tum Tugger is a terrible bore:
When you let him in, then he wants to be out;
He’s always on the wrong side of every door,
And as soon as he’s at home, then he’d like to get about.
He likes to lie in the bureau drawer,
But he makes such a fuss if he can’t get out.
Yes the Rum Tum Tugger is a Curious Cat–
And there isn’t any use for you to doubt it:
For he will do
As he do do
And there’s no doing anything about it!


The Rum Tum Tugger is a curious beast:
His disobliging ways are a matter of habit.
If you offer him fish then he always wants a feast;
When there isn’t any fish then he won’t eat rabbit.
If you offer him cream then he sniffs and sneers,
For he only likes what he finds for himself;
So you’ll catch him in it right up to the ears,
If you put it away on the larder shelf.


The Rum Tum Tugger is artful and knowing,
The Rum Tum Tugger doesn’t care for a cuddle;
But he’ll leap on your lap in the middle of your sewing,
For there’s nothing he enjoys like a horrible muddle.
Yes the Rum Tum Tugger is a Curious Cat–
And there isn’t any need for me to spout it:
For he will do
As he do do
And there’s no doing anything about it!

T. S. Eliot


The Rum Tug Tugger really is the epitome of cats.

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Friday Poetry: Hugo Williams

Happy Friday!

This week I have chosen a poem by Hugo Williams. Williams was born in 1942 and is a British poet, journalist and travel writer.

Reading through some poetry this week and this poem really stuck out for me and I have read it quite a few times since discovering it.



The evening advances, then withdraws again

Leaving our cups and books like islands on the floor.

We are drifting you and I,

As far from one another as the young heroes

Of these two novels we have just laid down.

For that is happiness: to wander alone

Surrounded by the moon, whose tides remind us of ourselves,

Our distances, and what we leave behind.

The lamp left on, the curtains letting in the light.

These things were promises. No doubt we will come

back to them.


Hugo Williams


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Friday Poetry: Ogden Nash

Happy Friday!

This week’s poem is a short one that made me laugh. It is by the American poet Ogden Nash and is based on homophones.


A Flea and a Fly

A flea and a fly in a flue

Were imprisoned, so what could they do?

Said the fly, ‘Let us flee!’

‘Let us fly!’ said the flea

So they flew through a flaw in the flue.


Ogden Nash


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Friday Poetry: Edgar Allen Poe

Happy Friday!

This Friday’s poem is by the great Edgar Allen Poe.


Annabel Lee

It was many and many a year ago,

In a kingdom by the sea,

That a maiden there lived whom you may know

By the name of Annabel Lee;

And this maiden she lived with no other thought

Than to love and be loved by me.


She was a child and I was a child,

In this kingdom by the sea,

But we loved with a love that was more than love – 

I and my Annabel Lee – 

With a love that the winged seraphs of Heaven

Coveted her and me.


And this was the reason that long ago,

In this kingdom by the sea,

A wind blew out of a cloud by night

Chilling my Annabel Lee;

So that her highborn kinsmen came

And bore her away from me,

To shut her up in a sepulchre

In this kingdom by the sea.


The angels, not half so happy in Heaven,

Went envying her and me:

Yes! that was the reason (as all men know,

In this kingdom by the sea)

That the wind came out of the cloud, chilling

And killing my Annabel Lee.


But our love it was stronger by far than the love

Of those who were older than we – 

Of many far wiser than we – 

And neither the angels in Heaven above

Nor the demons down under the sea,

Can ever dissever my soul from the soul

Of the beautiful Annabel Lee:


For the moon never beams without bringing me dreams

Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;

And the stars never rise, but I feel the bright eyes

Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;

And so, all the night-tide, I lie down by the side

Of my darling, my darling, my life and my bride,

In her sepulchre there by the sea – 

In her tomb by the side of the sea.


Edgar Allen Poe


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Friday Poetry: George MacDonald

Happy Friday!

Around this time of year lilies start to flower and although I’m highly allergic to lilies I do love water lilies and look forward to seeing them flower in our pond. So I have chosen a poem about lilies for this week.

Little White Lily

Little white Lily

Sat by a stone,

Drooping and waiting

Till the sun shone.

Little white Lily

Sunshine has fed;

Little white Lily

Is lifting her head.


Little white Lily

Said: ‘It is good:

Little white Lily’s

Clothing and fool!

Little white Lily

Drest like a bride!

Shining with whiteness,

And crowned beside!’


Little white Lily

Droopeth in pain,

Waiting and waiting

For the wet rain.

Little white Lily

Holdeth her cup;

Rain is fast falling,

And filling it up.


Little white Lily

Said: ‘Good again,

When I am thirsty

To have nice rain!

Now I am stronger,

Now I am cool;

Heat cannot burn me,

My veins are so full!’


Little white Lily

Smells very sweet:

On her head sunshine,

Rain at her feet.

‘Thanks to the sunshine!

Thanks to the rain!

Little white Lily

Is happy again!’


George MacDonald


Happy Reading!

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Friday Poetry: Clive Webster

Happy Friday!

The poem I have chosen today is from a poet I’ve never come across before but I throughly like this poem so thought I would share it.


The Magic of the Mind

I’ve read in books of magic lands

So very far away,

Where genies pop up out of lamps

And magic creatures play.

Where wizards weave their magic spells

And dragons breathe out fire,

Where just one wish gives young and old

Their every heart’s desire.


Those lands, of course, are just in books,

But if you try real hard,

Those magic places come to life

Right in your own back yard.

For sitting quietly in the sun

On a lazy Summer’s day

You can sit and smile and dream you’re there

In those lands so far away.


And as the sunshine warms your mind

You’re in those golden lands,

With wizards, genies, dragons, spells,

And cut-throat pirate bands.

You’re saving damsels in distress,

You’re fighting deadly duels,

You’re banqueting in marbled halls,

You’re decked in priceless jewels.


You’re there, you’re there, no need for books,

So real and oh so clear,

So marvellous and so magical,

To touch and smell and hear,

Just sitting there in golden sun

You leave your cares behind,

And go to magic places

In the Magic of your Mind.

Clive Webster


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